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APPENDIX B.—SPEECHES DELIVERED AT THE DINNER. 53
conceal tlie rest. (Laughter). I wish I could feel sure that the English Parliament, speaking both for the House of Lords and the House of Commons, was quite as free from all that kind of prejudice which Mr. Mundella rightly referred to as a shame to civilized parliaments in other parts of Europe. (Hear, hear). I do not believe that public opinion in this country would permit the forms of race hatred which he has referred to. But my experience on one Parliamentary Committee has shown me that there is a disposition towards prejudice, if not among the rich and powerful, at any rate among the poor and struggling. (Hear, hear). I do not, however, believe that in England, Jew-hatred could raise its head—at all events not in the fashion that you need care for ; and by means of schools and education you can give the best answer to and erect the best barrier in the way of any such attempts. Persecution is only possible where the oppressed are ignorant; where they cannot resist with brain and pen the tyranny that threatens them ; and we may hope that the traditions of Englishmen will stop the reviler—the foot shall stand, and the tongue speak, and the pen be used to vindicate the rights of the oppressed in all parts of the world. (Cheers.) You have been generous enough to permit me to deserve part of the compliments which have been so freely lavished on me to-night. I once had the opportunity of observing the proceedings of the House of Commons under conditions which were not creditable, and, when under the Peers' Gallery, I used to listen to Sir John Simon pleading the cause of oppressed nationalities. But I may say once again that in my opinion Parliament is neither better nor worse than the nation. Centuries ago it was not so far advanced as it is to-day, and centuries to come we may hope that it will be far in advance of what it is at present—when there will be no stigma on race or creed, or church, or outsiders, but when all will act as citizens of a free state working for the common good. (Hear, hear.) There is some danger, in my opinion, that too much may be expected from Parliament, which it is the habit to look on as an assembly of physicians, able to cure every ill. I believe that the less you have to do with doctors the better, for they are more likely to make diseases than to cure them ; and as a man should look most after his health and only need a doctor to deal with the causes of disease and prevent their recurrence, so should the Parliaments of the world be engaged in removing restrictions, breaking shackles, and clearing away old habits and prejudices which grew up in times of ignorance and force, and they should not be called on to regulate by law what people shall do, how they shall live, but to protect them against the ill-living of others. (Loud cheers.)
The Chairman : I have a serious duty to discharge, and I shall ask you to give me your indulgence, as I shall have to trouble you with some facts and figures which may be wearisome, but which, unfortunately, are true. It is well known to many of us that this Association was established twenty years ago by my uncle, Sir
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